Come out and defend people on social assistance. Friday, October 23rd
North East Corner of Atwell and Dixon
Coming from downtown: meet inside Kipling Station at 11:45am (tokens provided)
Get on the bus at 2pm at:
- Jane and Finch
- Jane and Sheppard
or, the corner of Jane & Wilson at 2:30pm
As a lead up to the November 5th Campaign for a Poverty Free Ontario
Province-Wide Day of Action, OCAP, Jane Finch Action Against Poverty and a number of people on social assistance will be conducting 2 mass case actions on October 23rd at two of the most notoriously bad welfare offices Toronto: Atwell and Wilson.
Today, more people than ever are being forced to live on welfare in Ontario. They face two major problems. First of all, the income they receive does not let them pay their rent and feed their families properly. Secondly, welfare offices like Atwell and Willson do all they can to deny even the small benefits people are supposed to get. When they apply for Special Diet, Community Start Up and other benefits, they are denied their rights. This must stop.
Street Health is an agency in Toronto that provides health, outreach, support and ID services to homeless and under-housed people in the City, primarily in the downtown east end. Many of our members and supporters rely on Street Health and its staff on a regular basis and we view this agency as an essential part of the downtown east community.
OCAP is greatly concerned with union busting activities that have been taking place at Street Health, including delaying bargaining and attempting to decertify the union.
We have sent a letter to the Board of Directors regarding the situation at Street Health and we encourage everyone concerned with homelessness to do the same. Below, you will find our letter as well as a sample letter to use to send to the Street Health Board.
Also, check out The Sunny House videos, particularly episode #21.
About 75 people on welfare and members of the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty went to Mayor David Miller's office in City Hall today to demand that people be issued their benefits that they city is illegally withholding because of the strike.
We waited outside the Mayor's office for over an hour but the city refused to even send someone out to speak to us. Eventually we delivered about 35 forms for the special diet by sliding them through a crack in Miller's glass doors.
The City says that it will only deal with "emergency" situations for people on welfare. This means that the City is refusing to process most new benefits for people on assistance and has frozen people's cheques. Not having enough to eat because you can't get your special diet is an emergency but Miller doesn't think so. Right any now, people cannot access the special diet - money people desperately need to be able to buy groceries.
The City has closed all but 3 welfare offices that are open for "emergencies only" during the CUPE strike.
The offices that are open are:
- Etobicoke North – 220 Attwell Dr – 416 392-6400
- Downtown – 111 Wellesley St E – 416 392-5300
- Scarborough West – 1225 Kennedy Rd – 416 392-2800
The City says that they are for emergencies only. To them, this means that cheques are frozen and people cannot get any new benefits, the basic things that people need.